vBulletin vs Xenforo - Board Software

Eric

Mama's lil stinker
Vaccinated
Posts
7,349
Reaction score
14,721
Location
California
Instagram
Main Camera
Sony
Since most of us are forum vets I thought I would throw this out there for those who have experienced both boards. I have been running boards in one way or another for a better part of 20 years or so, going way back to the days of IRC and BBS but have evolved with the times. My main board of choice has always been VB, I used to develop mods and was part of their staff for a while but in time it feels like they lost the race to social media and now seemingly in message board software as well.

Xenforo seems to be a more updated design with all the standard social features you would expect, the only real exception for me is the cost of their addons, which is ridiculously high. Typically ranging anywhere from $35 to over hundreds but at the same time they're quality for the most part.

For those who've been on both sides, what do you think?
 

Renzatic

Egg Nog King of the Eastern Seaboard
Vaccinated
Posts
3,252
Reaction score
5,664
Location
Dinosaurs
I can't say anything personally since this is beyond my area of expertise, but I've heard a lot of good things about Xenforo over the years.
 

DT

Hey sexy mama, wanna kill all humans?
Staff Member
Vaccinated
Site Donor
Posts
5,043
Reaction score
8,513
Location
Planet Express
I figure they probably go back and forth on any given update in terms of "better" product, so unless there's some really compelling reason to change, it's kind of 6-of-one ...
 

Runs For Fun

Masochist
Vaccinated
Site Donor
Posts
1,548
Reaction score
2,433
Location
Ohio
I can only give a user's perspective as I have not been an admin or a mod on either of these platforms. I think Xenforo is the better one. I've been seeing it in more and more places and vBulletin seems to be dying out. I feel like Xenforo is much more modern and vBulletin seems to be stuck in the past. It used to be the shit back in the day but I don't think it is anymore.
 
OP
Eric

Eric

Mama's lil stinker
Vaccinated
Posts
7,349
Reaction score
14,721
Location
California
Instagram
Main Camera
Sony
I can only give a user's perspective as I have not been an admin or a mod on either of these platforms. I think Xenforo is the better one. I've been seeing it in more and more places and vBulletin seems to be dying out. I feel like Xenforo is much more modern and vBulletin seems to be stuck in the past. It used to be the shit back in the day but I don't think it is anymore.
This is my take as well, vBulletin seems to have dropped the ball when it comes to default features, particularly the social aspects of the board.
 
Last edited:
OP
Eric

Eric

Mama's lil stinker
Vaccinated
Posts
7,349
Reaction score
14,721
Location
California
Instagram
Main Camera
Sony
I think vbulletin got left behind. I used to frequent a few vbulletin forums and was a ‘super moderator’ on one. I also owned a vb forum for a few years before I got bored. Xf is simply superior in every way from a user point of view. I don’t know anything about the admin or costs sides of the equation though.
It's a really different model, with vBulletin you can freely download most mods but with Xenforo every single decent mod costs money, you have to register at the developers site (even though you'll never visit them again) and it's a cash grab. It is what it is but I cannot stand that model.
 

Yoused

up
Vaccinated
Posts
2,847
Reaction score
4,588
Location
knee deep in the road apples of the 4 horsemen
The one feature I want, I may have already said this, is to have sticky post headers: when I scroll through a long post, especially one in a long thread, I would like the user name, avatar, etc, to stick to the top of the screen until I get to the next post, which should then stick in the same way until the next post and so on. My memory is pretty good, but it is just too easy to lose track of who wrote that thing.
 

Clix Pix

Focused
Vaccinated
Site Donor
Posts
2,244
Reaction score
4,739
Location
Eight Miles from the Tysons Apple Store, No. VA
Main Camera
Sony
I've been a mod on a forum which used vB in the past (later on they shifted to Xenforo but by then I was no longer a mod so I don't know the behind-the-scenes workings of the latter). Through the years I've also been a user on several forums with vB and now Xenforo. Only one forum where I look in every now and then is still using vB; the others have either disappeared altogether or have gone with Xenforo. When I go into the one which is still using vB I am immediately struck by the contrasts and see how truly out-of-date vB really is now. Actually, on that particular forum they are truly outdated anyway as they have not been keeping up with updates and changes to vB over the past two or maybe it's even three years. I think it's an issue of admins who don't really understand the importance of keeping up to date and also the issue of finances, as the site does not have a lot of sources of income and what they did have seems to be dwindling as time goes on. That site's clinging to an old version of vB doesn't do the latter any favors as far as creating an impression of how well that software is actually functioning now and meeting current needs! To be honest, I'm actually surprised that the whole thing hasn't crashed and burned long before now! I won't be surprised if one day I go there and, oops, get an error message and then later learn that the site is down permanently, or at least the forum discussion segment of it, due to their negligence in keeping up with their forum software. That's their problem, though.....

As far as Xenforo goes, I like it from the standpoint of a user. It seems to be fluid and functional and user-friendly, which is all-important, of course. They seem to be always looking ahead and adding some new features and functionality to make things even more smooth for the user/member of a given site. That is really unfortunate that from the standpoint of the site owner/administrator that most modifications and nice little additions that one would want to include to enhance the user experience even more come with a stiff price tag attached. Ouch!

I have not participated on or seen a web-based discussion forum which is currently using vB, so can't really offer any thoughts about that software's current strengths and weaknesses now vs Xenforo.....
 
OP
Eric

Eric

Mama's lil stinker
Vaccinated
Posts
7,349
Reaction score
14,721
Location
California
Instagram
Main Camera
Sony
I've been a mod on a forum which used vB in the past (later on they shifted to Xenforo but by then I was no longer a mod so I don't know the behind-the-scenes workings of the latter). Through the years I've also been a user on several forums with vB and now Xenforo. Only one forum where I look in every now and then is still using vB; the others have either disappeared altogether or have gone with Xenforo. When I go into the one which is still using vB I am immediately struck by the contrasts and see how truly out-of-date vB really is now. Actually, on that particular forum they are truly outdated anyway as they have not been keeping up with updates and changes to vB over the past two or maybe it's even three years. I think it's an issue of admins who don't really understand the importance of keeping up to date and also the issue of finances, as the site does not have a lot of sources of income and what they did have seems to be dwindling as time goes on. That site's clinging to an old version of vB doesn't do the latter any favors as far as creating an impression of how well that software is actually functioning now and meeting current needs! To be honest, I'm actually surprised that the whole thing hasn't crashed and burned long before now! I won't be surprised if one day I go there and, oops, get an error message and then later learn that the site is down permanently, or at least the forum discussion segment of it, due to their negligence in keeping up with their forum software. That's their problem, though.....

As far as Xenforo goes, I like it from the standpoint of a user. It seems to be fluid and functional and user-friendly, which is all-important, of course. They seem to be always looking ahead and adding some new features and functionality to make things even more smooth for the user/member of a given site. That is really unfortunate that from the standpoint of the site owner/administrator that most modifications and nice little additions that one would want to include to enhance the user experience even more come with a stiff price tag attached. Ouch!

I have not participated on or seen a web-based discussion forum which is currently using vB, so can't really offer any thoughts about that software's current strengths and weaknesses now vs Xenforo.....
VB has failed to keep up with the times and Xenforo, which is far newer, has jumped them by leaps and bounds. Speaking of old and dated boards the VB dev site is still using a 15 year old version of the board, it's ridiculous that they're so far behind.
 

Thomas Veil

Suspended
Posts
3,450
Reaction score
6,792
Xenforo does have its quirks. (Or are they iPhone quirks?)

Little things annoy me, like when I paste a quote, then drop down to the next line to type in my own response. If I drop down one line, the first word of my sentence will be capitalized. But if I drop down two lines (to better separate my response from the quote above it), all of a sudden I'm automatically in all lower caps. That just doesn't make sense.

Trying to adjust spacing between adjacent quote boxes can be problematical too. Do the wrong thing, and the quotes are merged, or one quote loses its box and becomes regular text.

But all in all, I agree, Xenforo has it over the other forum software out there.
 
Top Bottom